The AHA is part of a partnership with twenty other organizations to promote an alternative to the Obama administration’s plans for several subject based programs, including Teaching American History, that will be affected by the pending reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. The administration’s blueprint would combine subject specific grant programs into a single competitive program in which various subjects would be pitted against each other for resources.
Read the full Consensus Recommendations for a Well-Rounded Education (PDF) and see the ASCD’s Press Release (PDF).
Games can entertain, occupy, and captivate. Games can also teach. Trevor Owens and Jim Safley at George Mason’s Center for History and New Media recognized the educational value of games and how games can “promote humanities learning,” and so they created the Playing History web site.
The site offers a database of 126 “free historical games, interactives and simulations on the web,” and plans to keep adding more. Visitors to the site can search for games, view featured games, and suggest new games to be added to the database.
Today’s digital world allows younger generations to engage and interact with history like never before, such as through virtual games. In response to the concern “that students are not getting the information and tools they need for civic participation,” Justice Sandra Day O’Connor created the Our Courts web site to encourage middle school students to explore 21st century civics through the site’s interactive resources. In return, these resources teach students how to actively participate in a democracy by mimicking civic activities through virtual games.
In the news this week, the ArchivesNext blog is looking for nominations for their “Best Archives on the Web” awards. We also feature two posts this week on online historical resources: new lesson plans on EDSITEment and a roundup of digital archives. Keep reading for links to articles on the academic job market (and a football player who almost got his PhD in history), how to read history books, a book review from Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, and using historical maps in one’s research.
AHA Today regularly features the resources available on EDSITEment. We’ve profiled their monthly calendars and their thematic lesson plans (for example: the Olympics, the Civil War, the presidents). And while we’ve mentioned in the past that EDSITEment has quite a collection of Advanced Placement U.S. History lesson plans, today we take a closer look.
AP U.S. History Lesson Plans
All of EDSITEment’s AP U.S. history lesson plans are centered on primary source documents but also include secondary sources.
Much of history stems from exploration—of land, of resources, of people. The Inuit Heritage Trust, which is committed to protecting the heritage of arctic peoples, has created Inuit – Contact and Colonization, a resourceful teaching web site dedicated to takurngaqtaq, an Inuit term that translates to “encountering something for the first time.” The resources available on the site provide a historical and cultural context for Inuit contact with first nations, whalers, explorers, and traders. There are three primary types of contact outlined throughout the site’s sections: direct contact, indirect contact, and contact between cultures.
It seems everywhere we turn today we’re reading and hearing about new digital media fronts, especially when it comes to scholarly research and alternative teaching methods. Picturing U.S. History: An Interactive Resource for Teaching with Visual Evidence, a collaborative project between the American Social History Project and the Center for Media and Learning at City University of New York Graduate Center, is certainly no exception. Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, this interactive web site promotes ways for teachers in art history, American studies, and other humanities to incorporate historical visual media into their lesson plans.
Crossposted at the National History Center’s web site
In a report issued this week, a working group of the National History Center urges history departments to reassess their curriculum for history majors, with an eye towards emphasizing the goals and values of liberal education. A history major, the report argues, should “nurture [students’] liberal and civic capacities, in part by integrating disciplinary knowledge, methods, and principles into the broad experience of undergraduate education.”
The National History Center submitted its white paper on “The Role of the History Major in Liberal Education” to the Teagle Foundation, which generously supported this project.